Serge Aurier is forfeited for Ivory Coasts opening match at the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations against Equatorial Guinea on Wednesday evening.
The captain of the Elephants is forfeited for accumulation of yellow cards during the competition’s qualififers.
Also another Ivorian defender, Wilfried Konan will also be watching the game from the stands, for the same reasons.
A third player absent is the Ivory Coast’s number one goalkeeper, Sylvain Gbohouo who is in fact suspended for doping.
“When you’re in charge of a team like Côte d’Ivoire, you have to get three points in every game. I have played Equatorial Guinea on several occasions and it has always been close matches, ” Ivory Coast head coach Patrice Beaumelle explained at a press conference on Tuesday.
For the French coach, tonight’s meeting will not be easy. But he knows his players will do anything to win. “I love my team, I love my players. There is a nice balance between the lines. I know that if everyone makes up their minds we can go very far, we can hurt a lot. It’s up to us to do it, ”he added.